Australian media demand Google and Facebook 357 million euros for the news they publish


J.M. Sanchez


Updated:05/14/2020 10: 53h


The use of informative content by internet services, a new focus of attention. After years of dimes and diretes, the economic impact in the country has finally been established due to the use of internet information in its digital services. An Australian communication group on Thursday put at 600 million AUD (386 million dollars or 357 million euros) the amount that technology giants like Google and Facebook should pay each year to media in Australia for the news they publish.

Holding on to the code of conduct approved by the Australian Government in April, the chairman of the Nine Entertainment group (owner of “The Sydney Morning Herald” and “The Australian Financial Review”) Peter Costello has ensured that Facebook and Google are obliged to pay about 357 million euros to a fund that will be distributed among all the media in the country.

Australia last month ordered the official competition and consumer agency to create mandatory rules of conduct that include the payment and sharing of revenue generated by the publication of news by its internet platforms. Google and Facebook pay around 10% of the income they obtain in the country and it has been a matter of dispute for years. A situation that has been repeated in other European countries such as France or Spain, where they have studied the creation of specific “rates” for these US companies that, due to their global position, take advantage of the more relaxed fiscal pressure of some countries to pay less taxes.

This mandatory code of conduct, which will be developed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), also states that internet giants must cover issues such as data sharing, news classification and display , the payment and exchange of the income generated, indicated a month ago in a statement the head of the Treasury office, Josh Frydemberg.

Costello has assured that Google and Facebook should pay 10% of the income they obtain for publishing the news produced by the editors without being the authors of the journalistic material they publish. “We believe that Google and Facebook are generating advertising revenue from some 3,571 million euros in Australia and approximately 10% of that figure is the result of the content of the news, ”he defended.

The draft of this code is scheduled to be published in late July for consultation prior to its entry into force. It is a reform promoted by the ACCC that was previously reflected in a final report published in December where the impact of internet search engines and social media in the advertising and media market.

A sector that has suffered a setback due to the irruption of these companies that, together with Amazon, share the advertising cake worldwide. This report highlighted that digital platforms in Australia concentrated up to 51% of advertising investment in 2017 after doubling their participation in the previous five years at the expense of print publications, that in the same period they went from 33 to 12 percent of spending.

In Australia, Facebook is the main social network with 17 million registered users, according to some metrics, while Instagram, owned by the same company, accumulates about 11 million users. Instead, Google manages 90% of web traffic. A position situation that has caused a series of investigations for possible monopoly by the European Commission.


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